Liverpool came agonisingly close last season to ending their 24-year wait for a League title. Their performances in the second half of the season deserved to yield some silverware, but it wasn’t to be.
THAT slip by Steven Gerrard against Chelsea and the implosion at Crystal Palace were enough to ensure that Liverpool went away empty handed, but on the plus side they did manage to qualify for the Champions League.
Brendan Rodgers has received many plaudits since becoming Liverpool boss, and has definitely dragged Liverpool back into the mix. However, his success last season will be their undoing this year.
One of the main reasons that Liverpool were able to focus all of their attention and efforts on their league performances was that they had no European football to distract them. This season, they will be hindered by their participation in the Champions League.
Expectation from the fans will be higher after last season’s efforts, but the Liverpool fans are not stupid and will realise that it will be much trickier this time around. Their cause will not be helped by the departure of Luis Suarez for pastures new.
Too much to replace
You simply cannot replace a player of Suarez’s quality and he will be missed not just because of his phenomenal strike rate, but his general all round play.
Rodgers has brought some decent players in this summer, but the fact remains that Suarez is a massive loss. Rickie Lambert will give them another dimension in attack if and when required.
Adam Lallana is a wonderful player, and there will be a lot of pressure on him, Coutinho and Raheem Sterling to not only supply Daniel Sturridge will goal scoring opportunities, but to weigh in with their fair share of goals too.
The defence has been strengthened with the arrival of Dejan Lovren, but more reinforcements are required in that department.
Last season an exception
Liverpool exceeded all expectations last season, and were able to capitalise on two facts. The first being that Manchester United had an abysmal season and were going through a tough transitional period, the second was that they weren’t playing in Europe.
This season, United will be a tougher prospect, making a top four finish all that harder, and the Champions League will be a real distraction.